Wednesday, December 6, 2023

Why Is Jewelry Cleaning Important?

Jewelry can get pretty dirty. From hand lotion to dust to sanitizer, it can build up over time, leaving your favorite pieces dull and dingy.

While taking your fine jewelry to a professional is one option, it's also straightforward and affordable to clean it at home. Here are some of the reasons why it's essential to do so.

It Keeps It Sparkling

Jewelry is a precious and beautiful accessory, but it can lose its sparkle over time. A thorough jewelry cleaning Williamsburg, VA, can restore its luster and glisten, making it look new. Some jewels may require special care or cleaning methods, but most can be cleaned at home with everyday household items. Just be sure to follow the instructions on your specific jewelry and never use abrasive or harsh chemicals, as these can damage some materials.

There are many types of jewelry, and each type needs to be cleaned differently. For example, delicate pearls and opals need to be treated with extra care when cleaning. They can absorb and be damaged by harsh detergents and solvents, so only clean them with mild, non-abrasive solutions. Be careful when rinsing your jewelry, and avoid dropping it down the drain. This could cause permanent damage to your precious pieces! Instead, use a dedicated bowl of clean water.

It Prevents Discoloration

While it's true that storing jewelry properly can keep it looking like new, even brand-new jewelry accumulates dust and grime. This can dull the shine and weaken prongs that hold gemstones in place. If left unattended, this can cause the stones to become loose and fall out or get damaged.

Using mild detergent soap and warm water to clean your jewelry can remove most dirt and buildup. Leaving it to soak for a few minutes can also help, as well as scrubbing with a toothbrush in any nooks and crannies.

However, soaking some pieces can damage or discolor certain materials, such as pearls and opals. It's also not recommended for antique or rare artist jewelry, as these pieces may lose their patina if submerged in liquids. Additionally, many cleaning solutions contain ammonia, which can damage some metals and gems. This is why we recommend selecting an ammonia-free cleaner. It is safe for most silver and non-porous gemstones and will not irritate the skin.

It Prevents Tarnish

Besides removing dirt, grime, and oils from the surface of your jewelry, cleaning regularly can keep your gems in their settings. This is especially important for gemstones and pearls that are delicate and can be easily lost or damaged if they are exposed to rough elements, friction, and pressure.

Your customers can also help prevent tarnish by storing their jewelry in an air-tight container, such as a jewelry pouch or box (even a Ziplock bag will work), and adding an anti-tarnish strip that's been treated with a tarnish-preventing chemical. They can also help prevent tarnish by wearing their jewelry more often, as the natural oils on their skin will stop the chemical reaction that causes tarnish.

One of the easiest ways to clean jewelry is with hydrogen peroxide. Fill a small bowl with the solution, add your jewelry, and let it soak for a few minutes. Rinse and dry thoroughly to avoid water spots.

It Prevents Damage

Over time, dirt and grime can damage your jewelry. These abrasive particles can wear down prongs or cause stones to lose their luster and become loose. When this happens, you may need to repair your piece, which can be expensive. Keeping your jewelry clean prevents this and helps it last as long as possible.

The best way to keep your jewelry clean is to get it professionally cleaned regularly. Most jewelers offer ultrasonic cleaning, which uses sound waves to gently but thoroughly clean each piece. They also operate steam and polishing machines, which can clean difficult-to-reach areas.

In between professional cleanings, you can clean your jewelry at home with mild cleaners and gentle brushes. A little dish soap can effectively remove the buildup of hand lotion, oils, and dirt from daily wear. Just make sure you don't rinse your jewelry over the sink, as this can cause it to be damaged by harsh chemicals and debris from the drain.

Disclaimer: I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. I have used direct text from the website of the company/product I am promoting to facilitate in my review.

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